Under the blazing sun, more than 2,000 Atlantans piled into Piedmont Park for the highly anticipated 7th Annual Atlanta Ice Cream Festival.
Even though the temperature peaked to around 91 degrees, attendees braved the humidity to scoop up frozen desserts from vendors, such as Brusters, Kona and Steel City Pops during the event that lasted from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
When Viviane Santos heard that this event was happening online, she knew she had to come out, because she loves ice cream. The refreshing frozen treats really hit the spot, especially when it's hot outside, she said.
"I like how you're outside with a lot of people. I also like the live music that they play," she said. "I'm just going to walk around see if anything seems exciting or interesting.”
Her ice cream festival adventure kicked off with shaved ice, and she was sure to not limit herself to just tasting her favorite ice cream flavors, which are cookie dough and cookies & creme.
Mokipops, a kid-operated business, served up vegan pops, including Basil Lemonade and Strawberry Creme flavors, that are made of fresh fruits picked from local fields.
Amber Kahn, mother of the three Mokipops owners who range in ages from 5-9, said the summer project turned business has already payed off for the kids. They've sold more than 4,000 pops in two years through selling them at different events during the summer. The Kahns, who recently won a the local APEX Youth Initiative Award, plan to come to next year's ice cream festival.
"The turnout is amazing...I'm very impressed with the event," Kahn said.
Ice cream, despite the event's name, was not the only indulgence for festival goers. Roswell Chocolate Co., which specializes in bean to bar chocolates that include Key Lime Truffle, Coconut Truffle and Espresso Ganache treats, made their first appearance at the festival. Danielle Fontenot, owner of the newly opened business, said the massive event was a nice surprise.
"It's extremely packed, but that means good business," Fontenot said. "The people are really awesome. I've heard a lot of awesome stories."
Savory foods like barbecue and kettle popcorn were available for purchase to balance off all the sweets. The day was also filled with fun to get attendees working off the sugary indulgences like line dancing with Kim Armstrong to doing Trust Yoga. Free wellness screenings that checked for blood pressure and cholesterol were also on site throughout the event.
Yupat Merriam learned about the festival through her family, because the day was coordinated by her sister-in-law. The heat and the ice cream paired perfectly together, Merriam said during the festival.
"I've never been to one before. So you get to see all types of flavors," Merriam said. "I think it's the perfect activity to go out with family and friends to just go out and do something and get in the sun."